Wednesday, February 07, 2007

Iranian Diplomat Kidnapped

..By Gunmen in Iraqi Uniforms
"Thirty armed men dressed as Iraqi soldiers kidnapped a senior Iranian diplomat on the streets of Baghdad, an Iraqi government official said on Tuesday.. ..The Islamic Republic News Agency quoted Iranian Foreign Ministry spokesman Mohammad Ali Hosseini as saying the Defence Ministry was ordered to detain Jalal Sharaki, the second secretary at the Iranian Embassy.

'Iran holds American forces in Iraq responsible for the safety and life of the Iranian diplomat,' Hosseini was quoted as saying, in his condemnation of the 'aggressive act.'

One Iraqi government official backed those statements, telling the Associated Press the diplomat was seized by a special Iraqi army unit that reports directly to the U.S. military.

But a military spokesman denied any U.S. troops or Iraqis could have been involved. 'We've checked with our units and it was not an MNF-I (Multi-National Forces-Iraq) unit that participated in that event,' U.S. military spokesman Lt. Col. Christopher Garver said."
Whether the unidentified gunmen were acting under US authority or not, this is incredibly bad news. On the one hand, assuming they were not acting on American orders, you have a scenario very similar to events of Jan. 22 in Karbala, when a group in Iraqi uniform entered a government compound in GMC SUVs;
"Once inside, [ ] the men unleashed one of the deadliest and most brazen ambushes of U.S. forces in a secure, official area. Five U.S. service members were killed in a hail of grenades and gunfire in a breach of security that Iraqi officials called unprecedented."
One has to ask, how did these uniforms, weapons, and equipment (GMC SUVs for cryin' out loud !?!) get in the hands of the insurgency? And the simplest answer would be that the insurgents simply stood in line and signed up with the Iraqi army. They were then issued all the necessities to wage war against coalition troops, trained in their use, fed and payed for months.. then, when the time was ripe they deserted, taking as much with them as they could lay their hands on. That's what happens when you arm and train people who hate you. I'm waiting now for the inevitable 'Who could have anticipated this?' statement from Condi Rice.

Of course the alternative scenario, where the kidnappers were under US command, although covertly so, is much worse. That would signal the US invasion of Iran, the expansion of the war in the Middle East, and all the bloody horror that would entail. With only two years to achieve Armageddon, the Stuffed Codpiece in Chief may be kicking it up another notch. Anyone who believes that the Iraq war isn't the biggest foreign policy boondoggle in American history should read this editorial from Common Dreams, by Jay Bookman. Pretty gloomy - but true.

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